This is a simple topic. At least it seems so at first sight. You know your nearest and dearest so perfectly that you surely can describe the tiniest details of their appearances and characters. Describing your best friend might turn a bit more complicated because probably you aren’t certain of some aspects of their nature. Nevertheless, you can easily write about their style, habits, hobbies. And that seems quite enough.
But that is unlikely to bring you a high grade you expect. There’s a little trick about describing people. If you want to make your essay stand out, if you want to go really original and impress, you shouldn’t confine yourself to writing about appearances and characters solely.
Moreover, you shouldn’t be too straightforward. Instead you should use all your creativity and desire to show off. Agree that it’s not very interesting to read about the colors of someone’s elder sister hair and eyes, or about her height and figure. You’d better not even try to imagine how many dozens of similar essays your teacher has already looked through.
No, it’s not that they may be bored of almost identical ways their students describe their friends or family members. Such descriptions just can’t fascinate them, so they aren’t interested in giving you a good grade. That’s how it works.
However, you can leave your teacher with no choice but to evaluate your essay positively. Check the tips below!
Start with a Short but Intriguing Story
Yes, it’s the 101st time you are told that an introduction to your essay must be compelling. It must make a reader wish to learn more of the topic. Even if this topic is your younger sibling.
Refrain from beginning the essay with the description of their face. Between you and me, everybody will do that. And you don’t want your paper to be similar to the one of your every group mate, do you? You certainly need something original.
So, tell your own story! If you’re writing about your younger brother, it may be something like that:
At first it is difficult to realize that now you have someone you are told to share your room with. It is strange to feel that your mom is holding a real little human being, not a doll. But you do not even notice how fast time goes by. And one perfect day it occurs to you that you share not just the room but also joys and sorrows, victories and defeats with the loving and caring human being who wants to be like you.
Don’t Turn Description into Statement
Remember the last novel or short story you’ve read. It definitely has some descriptions of landscapes, houses, rooms, and people. It’s true that descriptions of places may be a little boring, and reading them is really time-consuming. But if you check at least the first two sentences of a 2-page chunk of text with a description of a cathedral or clearing, you’ll see that an author went much further than “The walls of the cathedral are brown” or “The grass on the clearing is dry”.
Grammatically these sentences are absolutely correct. Plus, they are meaningful and descriptive. However, these are facts, as dry as that grass.
So, in your case, you’d better not write anything like:
My friend has red hair and blue eyes.
You could turn it into this:
Even if your eyesight fails you, recognizing this girl in a crowd is very easy. As soon as you notice a bright fire among people’s heads, you can be sure Mary is approaching. Even in winter, when she wears a black hat, it’s not difficult to see the flames of her red hair fluttering as she walks.
Stuff Your Essay with Original Metaphors
Actually, this ubiquitous stylistic device can help you write a correct descriptive essay, and not just a sequence of fact-stating sentences. Of course, you shouldn’t overuse it. But it will stand you in good stead if you want to come up with non-cliched comparisons.
For you to be sure that you understand what a metaphor must be, let’s remember the definition of this term.
The right metaphor is a figure of speech describing a person, thing, action, etc. by referring it to something or somebody that implies the same qualities as the object of description.
Let’s check the following example to get a better idea of how metaphors can be used in your descriptive essay:
When she feels happy, her azure eyes shine like two diamonds in the bright light. When she is sad, they remind of two deep lakes in the rainy weather. When she is angry, it seems that there are electric discharges striking from them in all directions.
Write with Affection, No Matter How Pathetic It Sounds
If your home assignment is an essay about a person, make sure you select someone you really like. However, a celebrity is not a good choice anyway. You’ll need to imagine this person, remember something very special about her. And these memories should make you feel warm, comfortable, and enthusiastic enough to put them on paper.
When you write, stay optimistic, humorous, and creative. Your essay will absorb your mood. And that will make it unique.
I’ll try to provide you with a good example. This is a description of my mom:
I have always liked watching my mom cooking. Her tender thin hands easily deal with meat and vegetables. Her careful grey-and-green eyes control both the cooker and the oven, situated in two opposite corners of the kitchen. I do not even imagine how she does it. And when she chooses the spices and mixes them in a separate bowl, she looks like a sorceress selecting the best ingredients for a successful craft.
Don’t Forget to Proofread
After you finish writing, take a 10-minute rest and then reread the essay carefully. Make sure all letters and commas are on their right places. Check the structures of sentences. As soon as you feel you really like it, your paper is ready for submission.
You can learn more about descriptive writing here.